An Analysis Of Childhood In Bless Me, Ultima By Rudolfo Anaya

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Coming to grips with reality as one matures of passage celebrated around the world. Many young children are given ceremonies to celebrate the advancement to adulthood. What these ceremonies do not show is the confusion and turmoil caused by coming of age. Rudolfo Anaya’s novel, ‘Bless Me, Ultima’, shows the constant conflicts of adulthood and childhood. Anaya conveys this idea with the constant fighting between his family, hypocritical advice given by authority, and the death of vital characters to show that blossoming isn’t a pretty process. With the constant struggle between innocence and maturity in oneself, Anaya depicts that gaining new knowledge coupled with losing innocence is vital to coming of age, as seen in the main character, Tony.
When a child transitions between being a child and an adult, there is a period of vulnerability. Where influences can impose its thoughts onto the child. This openness comes with inevitable pain. No pain can compare to what Tony experiences. Tony had snuck out of his house to discover the ruckus that was going on in his town. He had hidden himself in shrubbery watching the scene unfold.
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These traumatic experiences do not harm a person physically., instead true changes that happen occur deep in your brain. To change inside, innocence must be lost and knowledge must be gained. For Tony, in one of his prophetic dreams, Tony gets told this mentality by his brother, ‘You are innocent until you understand.’(P:71) This interaction happens due to Tony’s brothers entering a brothel, something that goes against his strict Catholic upbringing. Anaya links this premise to Adam and Eve. In a similar way she was punished, Tony is punished with pain. This pain is knowledge, in Adam and Eve, Eve gained knowledge of heresy and Tony gained knowledge of adulthood. Both of these events caused maturation in painful and unwanted ways. In the end, both characters come of
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